“Cute” may not be a selling point for most streaming devices on the market today, but it’s about the only way to describe a new offering from PBS.
The device from PBS is an HDMI streaming stick that promises over 100 hours of kid friendly content, plus offline games that can be played with an included remote. But what really makes this stick stand out is that all the content and games are stored locally in the 16GB of space on the stick. That means kids can watch their shows without a Wi-Fi connection. When connected to Wi-Fi, the device will have access to the 24/7 PBS Kids live stream that shows an assortment of programming from the network.
According to a PBS press release, available games include Rail Riders, Sound Box, and Road Trip Adventure.
Of course, what also makes this stick stand out is the incredibly kid-centric design, with the device itself shaped like a green race car with a smiling character inside. There’s an SD card slot on stick, it has 1 GB of RAM, and it’s powered by microUSB.
The PBS Kids streaming stick will be available only at Wal-Mart at first, for a price of $49.99. That seems a tad high at first, especially considering that other devices that do more can access the same live streaming content for cheaper. But the kid-friendly part is certainly a huge selling point, and with a remote that looks easy enough for any kid to navigate, this is assuredly a case of “less is more.”
There’s also the big benefit of parents not having to worry about an inappropriate YouTube video popping up while their kid is browsing, or a kid inadvertently firing up an episode of, say, Game of Thrones while looking for Peppa Pig.
It’s on sale online now, and should hit stores by the end of May. Eventually, the stick will be sold in other retailers around the US.